Game and Fish are investigating an incident in which a person reportedly shot and killed a grizzly in self-defense Tuesday on Sheep Mountain.
According to G&F officials, a person on the mountain southwest of Cody had a surprise encounter with a mother grizzly bear that morning, and said they shot the bear in self-defense.
Dan Smith, Cody Region wildlife supervisor, said the person involved reported the incident immediately after the surprise encounter with the sow and nearby cubs.
“We’re just glad there were no injuries,” Smith said.
G&F personnel investigated the scene to confirm the death of the adult female grizzly, but were unable to locate the cubs.
No information on the identity of the person is being released while the investigation is ongoing.
G&F has also dealt with four problem bears this year, two of which they had to put down due to repeat problems.
G&F biologist Luke Ellsbury said it’s been a relatively normal year for problem grizzlies.
“It’s probably about average right now,” he said. “May tends to be a period of high activity. But once elk calves are born, the grizzlies move up to hunt those.”
The most recent grizzly bear had been causing problems since 2009. The male was known to kill cattle in the Meeteetse area, and was caught because Ellsbury said he’d been frequenting the calving pasture at Turnell Cattle Company. He was put down in early April.
“We made the decision to capture him, but we didn’t know which bear it was,” he said. “Once we figured out he had a history with cattle, we made the decision to remove him.”
The other bear was caught in the Clark area and put down due to a history of killing cattle.